Making it easy to travel stylishly

Last summer I wrote about travelling in style and I thought this was a topic well worth revisiting, as so many of us are jetting off for our annual break.  We all aspire to look effortlessly chic when we travel, but it’s not easy now that so much of the glamour has gone out of it (particularly by air).  Long gone are the days when people dressed up to get on a boat, plane or train.  Add to that the extensive security, the sheer volume of people and the waiting times – even the most chic and put together woman can look a mess by the time she gets to her destination.

Here are my top tips to make it easy:

  • Dress well. By this I don’t mean you have to wear something dressy, but do make an effort to look put together. Dark jeans and a breton top are a foolproof combination – just make sure the jeans have some stretch. If you’re heading somewhere hot, wearing a lightweight knit (or light flowing trench) on your journey means you’ll have something warm to wear when you arrive back in the always-cooler UK
  • Wear shoes you can get out of easily. You’re not always asked to take them off – but it’s best to be prepared. Elegant flats, loafers, sliders or stylish trainers are best (I love my silver sliders and Ash and Nike Flyknit trainers). If you choose heels, keep them at a mid-height – remember you’ll be walking miles of corridors at the airport, and your feet will swell on the plane

easy_silver sliders

  • Carry your jewellery. I always carry my jewellery in my handbag or carry on – I never ever pack it in my case. Carrying it rather than wearing it also means I’m not fussing with necklace and bracelet clasps and having to drop them loose into the plastic trays when getting ready to go through security. Don’t go mad – stick to the pieces you love and will actually wear

easy_jewellery

  • Wear sunglasses for instant chic. There are so many reasons celebrities do this: instant glamour, hiding tiredness, not having to wear makeup, etc

easy_sunglasses

  • Don’t wear white or linen. They get grubby and crease like mad– you’ll look a mess at the other end !
  • Wear items that you will wear on your trip. That way, they do double duty and you’re not packing even more.

Make an effort to buck the prevailing trend of slovenly airport wear and who knows, you may even get upgraded.

How to take a ‘palette’ approach to packing

It’s holiday time !  And however much we look forward to this time of year, packing and preparing for it seems to be ever more stressful.  Taking an approach based on a particular colour palette can help you pack less, pack simply and pack well, ensuring that everything works together.

packing2It’s important to remember that packing everything but the kitchen sink will only result in heavy suitcases, and feeling overwhelmed with clothing choices when you get to your destination.  You’re on holiday to relax, so keeping your options clear and simple will help to declutter your mind and get you in the right spirit.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Choose a colour palette. And stick to it. What are the dominant colours in the clothespalette approach2 you love to wear?  If you have a favourite navy swimsuit, for example, build your holiday wardrobe around a palette of navy, white and camel: add denim shorts, white or breton tops/cover ups and tan or white sandals.  This approach will stop you packing too much, but only if you stick to it !
  2. Keep the shoes neutral.  Stick to neutral tones that work across your chosen palette – white, black, silver, camel – so that you don’t take too many pairs.  Ideally, all you need is one or two pairs of flip flops, a pair of sandals, a pair of white trainers and wedges for evening.  Don’t bother with other heels – believe me, you won’t wear them.
  3. Add a bag (and a hat).  Choose and carry a tote that works with as many of your outfits aspalette approach3 possible, and add a smaller clutch (carried inside it) to use for evenings.  And nothing says ‘chic’ like a beach hat in straw, navy or black.
  4. Make a list.  People think I’m mad but I always create a list of what I plan to take at least a week before.  This helps me group outfits by colour, and gives me time to buy any last minute flip flops or beauty products.  It also gives me a useful record in case my luggage goes astray.
  5. Consider the culture.  If you’re heading to the Middle or Far East, for example, check with your host or tour operator about any particular clothing etiquette you need to consider. A cashmere wrap (in a neutral tone that works with everything) is always useful (and great for cold planes).

Finally, make sure you label your luggage with your name and phone number (not your address) both inside and out, as sometimes outside labels get lost.

Have a fantastic holiday !

 

Guest blog: top tips for great holiday photos

This week, Susi Doherty, Creative Director of Vervate shares her top tips for taking and making the most of your holiday photos.  Thanks Susi !

Capturing in pictures those long-awaited days of great scenery, family, friends, amazing sites or simply just restful moments is something we all love to do – and many of us with do it with our mobile phones.  Here are my top tips for taking better photographs on your mobiles here.

There are other things that you can do that will really bring your images to life and keep those memories lingering for longer – here are just a few:

The journey

Holiday photos_AlpsLove it (or not), travelling is an amazing thing to be able to do.  These days your mobile’s GPS (and some cameras) will tag your location if you have put it on.  I really enjoy this aspect from an aeroplane – here’s a quick picture I snapped when we we travelling over the Alps recently.

 

A little thought

Holiday photos_thinkIt’s easy just to pick up our mobiles and click at something.  Each image is disposable and doesn’t cost us anything, unlike in the days of film (not that I remember of course – ahem) when a finger in front of the lens cost us one of the precious 24 pictures on the film roll (and a disappointed face when the photos came back from Prontoprint).  Here’s what can happen if you don’t think about it (see photo to the left)…

 

Holiday photos_pompeii..and here is a picture I thought more about.  It was taken at Pompeii, right at the edge of the excavation.  There were poppies and corn swaying in the wind over the unexcavated ruins:

Think about what it is you want to say in the photograph.  Don’t play down your experience by not trying to get in the moment. What is it you want to remember?  A feeling?  Remember that there is a reason you are inspired to take a photo of something or someone.  Get that inspiration in the photo and you will remember it far more intensely.  The photo above makes me feel the warm breeze, peace and melancholy for the once beautiful city that I felt when I was actually there.

Angles

Holiday photos_statuesDon’t follow the pack!  All the other tourists were taking photos of these stunning statues at Pompeii straight on.  Boof, here’s a statue.  Next…?  The artist had created the most amazing statues.  They were awe inspiring because of their size and the way they loomed over the ruins.  That’s why in this image I went for the ‘up’ angle so that you get a sense of their scale.

 

The incidentals

So many of us just take selfies or posed shots.  Get sneaky and capture the wistful smile on your partner’s face as they look at a view, or something funny happening, or even a sign or close up of the sea (unless you are in England, in which case that tends to give you a brown blob!).

Edit!

Take the time to edit a copy of your favourite photos with an app – there are so many to choose from but they do make a huge difference.  Enjoy your holiday, but don’t spend so much time looking at your screen that you don’t actually get a sense or feel for where you are!  The best photos come from those sensations.

At Vervate, we seek to work with all our clients to enable them to build their own visual portfolio. Have a chat with Susi, to see how we help you create your own bank of quality images.